Researchers in Canada studied health claims of almost the entire adult population of Ontario between 1994 and 2000. That included 379,000 people with diabetes, and over 9 million without diabetes.
In an article in last week's Lancet, they reported that, when it came to cardiovascular disease, having diabetes was equivalent to ageing 15 years.
According to Dr. Gillian Booth, lead author of the study:
"We found on average that people who are 40 with diabetes have the same level of risk as someone without diabetes who is 55, and that was the same virtually for men and women."
"Middle-aged and older people with diabetes seem on average to be at high risk of CVD, thus aggressive risk-reduction strategies are warranted for them."
For the study (abstract):
Relation between age and cardiovascular disease in men and women with diabetes compared with non-diabetic people: a population-based retrospective cohort study
Diabetes adds 15 years: Study
Diabetes Confers Health Risk Equivalent To Ageing 15 Years